The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) has launched two 3D printing facilities in the country in its bid to leapfrog ASEAN countries in the additive manufacturing industry.
According to a recent press release, DOST Secretary Fortunato de la Peña and other Department officials recently inaugurated the Additive Manufacturing Research Laboratory (AMREL).
Additive Manufacturing Research Laboratory (AMREL)
The laboratory is a state-of-the-art 3D printing research facility equipped with the latest machines on additive manufacturing located at the Bataan Peninsula State University.
AMREL is the first additive manufacturing research laboratory in the Philippines.
Since 2 July 2018, it has been utilised to conduct research for undergraduate and graduate theses.
A technology demonstration was even done at the lab, by the project leader of AMREL, with junior high school students of the Bataan National High School, successfully creating a 3D printed drone.
The President of the University, where the Lab is located, is grateful for the research laboratory and the innovations it can bring for all, particularly the future generations.
The Laboratory will be utilised for several thrusts. These are:
- Development of new materials
- Testing and characterisation of materials
- Faculty and student sharing and creating of ideas
- Rapid prototyping, tooling, and manufacturing
- Training, education, and empowerment
- Designing and analysis of parts and systems
Additive Manufacturing Centre (AMCen)
Meanwhile, the Department Secretary was also present during the ground-breaking ceremony for the construction of the Additive Manufacturing Centre.
This facility aspires to be the country’s leading research centre in innovative 3D printing technologies, processes, and materials.
OpenGov Asia earlier reported on AMCen, which will feature two state-of-the-art research facilities that are seen to spur interest in Additive Manufacturing Research.
These facilities are the Multiple Materials Platform for Additive Manufacturing (MATDEV) and the Research on Advanced Prototyping for Product Innovation and Development using Additive Manufacturing Technologies (RAPPID-ADMATEC).
Two DOST agencies will be leading its management. The Industrial Technology Development Institute (DOST-ITDI) will be developing new materials for additive manufacturing.
While the second agency, Metals Industry Research and Development Centre (DOST-MIRDC), will be handling the advanced prototyping.
The Centre is expected to rise after nine months and will be operational in its second year of implementation.
Collaboration is key
The Centre’s ground-breaking ceremony was witnessed by industry representatives from the manufacturing sectors.
It is critical to form partnerships with different agencies in order to optimise the objectives of the program.
Agencies such as national government organisations, non-government agencies, private companies, and the academe should all learn to work together.
With the recent trends in the Industry 4.0, advanced additive manufacturing will support the country’s independence from many imported items and will sustain development.
Moreover, it will also serve as buffer to the economic effect concerning importation, inflation, and dollar fluctuation while enhancing the technical support of the government to the industry.
The collaboration between the academe and the industry is encouraged in order to produce new products, substitutes for parts or components, and to discover other applications of 3D printing.
Change is coming
The Executive Director of the DOST-Philippine Council for Industry, Energy, and Emerging Technology Research and Development (DOST-PCIEERD) expressed optimism over the prospects of additive manufacturing in the country with the opening of the two new facilities.
The additive manufacturing research industry will open the doors to previously unimaginable possibilities, and every single 3D-printed product will unfold more innovations.
This will change the way things are created as it will be different from what everyone is used to.
From small parts to big structure, 3D printing will have many uses in aerospace, defence, biomedical, healthcare, printed electronics, agricultural machinery, and automotive industries.